1st of May is Labor Day in Germany and in some cities traditionally the day for a parade by the extreme right-wing parties. Of course then the left-wing people and lots of other groups jump in to protest against it.
I wanted to visit a friend today and went there by train. I hadn't known there would be one of these big demonstrations. Police all over the place. I hope I smiled at the right times because there were quite a few of them with cameras. Haha. Really I didn't feel like smiling, though. It scared the heck out of me. When I came out of the train station, I didn't believe my eyes. Had I known it would be like this we could have set a different meeting place. To make it short, after feeling not very safe in a group of yelling people I almost begged the police to let me back into the station which was allowed when you had a ticket. There we finally found each other.
On the way back it was even worse. The first thing we saw when coming to the station were water cannons going off and a crowd of people running into our direction. I got out of the car and tried to get inside, but at first I was stuck in a group with young people arguing with the police. After I could finally show my ticket again I was admitted to the station. On the way I saw injured people lying on the ground being tended to by paramedics, a crying girl that asked a policeman where they had taken her boyfriend who had been arrested. I was so glad when I had arrived on the track safely only to see there was another crowd - no idea which wing they belonged to, but they sounded loud and aggressive - guarded by the police. When they finally had moved to a different track, I felt for the first time I could breathe a little easier, but I had gotten my hopes up too soon. A guy with a right-wing shirt and another guy who didn't approve of it (which I can understand just too well!!) started going at each other, but some elder people reacted real fast and went in between.
I have probably never been that happy to see a train. Even if I had to sit upstairs because downstairs was another crowd.
I arrived safely at home eventually. Maybe my feelings were overreactions, but I had never experienced something like it and I have a problem with big gatherings anyway. Gee, I don't even like to go to big wedding or birthday parties with people I know!
At any rate it was scary. Not only because of the aggressivity I could sense, not only because the police looked like they were ready to go into war with their helmets, enormous boots and weapons, not only because I am a wimp, but because there shouldn't be people like that at all. Young people - and not only in Germany - that glorify what happened so long ago, that have opinions that are just plain dangerous. Dangerous for the whole world.


  1. I'm glad you got home ok, Cat! Tolerance is certainly something this world could use a massive dose of!

  2. Mannomann, das war ja alles andere als ein beschaulicher Erster-Mai-Ausflug... Überall ging es noch schlimmer zu als sonst, sogar in Ulm mussten sie Wasserwerfer einsetzen.
    Da bin ich sehr froh zu lesen, dass du heil den Tag beenden konntest! *knuddel*

  3. Genau da war ich ... in Ulm ...